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From Humble Beginnings: An Essential Primer on Toyota Truck History

The Toyota Motor Company has a vast and rich history. There’s a lot of interesting and surprising things you might not know about it. 

For example, you know that the company is almost 100 years old. But did you know it was an offshoot of their loom division

They’re so popular they’ve also sold nearly 200 million vehicles worldwide. No wonder their trucks are among the top 10 sold in the US! 

Want to know more about this fascinating company? Let’s take a look at the always-interesting Toyota truck history! 

The Toyota Hilux: A Legend Begins

The very first Toyota truck was introduced to Americans in 1969. It was a small Toyota truck, sporting only a short bed. 

It also was only available with rear drive. By 1972, they bumped up the ponies available to 109. 

Our country was smitten with this truck, and a legend was born. 

The Next Evolution of the Toyota Truck

By the second generation, the Hilux’s cab was tweaked. The bed grew longer and it lost a few ponies but gained a more eco-friendly engine. 

Another thing it lost? the name Hilux. 

Starting in 1973 and continuing to 1994, the name Hilux was dropped. The vehicle was marketed and labeled as only “the Toyota truck”. 

That name got straight to the point. The American public was still in love with this efficient, high-performance vehicle. 

Through the 80s

Toyota pickup models continued to expand. Toyota was the first to offer an automatic transmission and leaf-spring suspension so you could take it off-roading. 

Throughout the 80s, Toyota offered more luxe options. You could upgrade your truck with chrome details, power steering, and A/C. 

Plus, the truck became more family-friendly. You could get a bucket seat in the front for a small child or even have space for passengers in the back. 

The Tacoma Arrives

Toyota had a reputation for handling a lot of payload and taking on any rugged terrain. From there, they turned their focus to safety, ride quality, and comfort. 

Enter the Tacoma. The first generations offered 3.4-liter V6 that gave the truck 220 lb-ft of torque and nearly 200 horses under the hood. 

Toyota Tacoma Generations and Modifications

As we mentioned, Toyota trucks are always in the top 10 sold in the US. The Tacoma sits comfortably among the top five. 

This truck offers plenty of room and plenty of power. Plus, you can get it upgraded with lots of updates and accessories

The 2018 Toyota Tacoma accessories line has tons of cool options. There’s LED side projection ditch lights, an awesome aftermarket grille, and even magnetic phone mounts to make your Tacoma a home away from home. 

Learn More Toyota Truck History

Thanks for taking this stroll down Toyota truck history with us. This brand has been in the business for a long time and still has tons to offer. 

There’s a reason Tacomas and other Toyota trucks are in the top 10 sold in the states. They’ve got the experience to back it up. 

Want to learn more about all the famous vehicle brands you love? Check out our articles about classic cars to learn even more history!